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Glacier Country Hangout (SOLD OUT/waiting list)

August 24 - August 31

Beargrass Lodging & RV Resort • Hungry Horse, MT • August 24-31, 2021

This Hangout is currently sold out, but join the waiting list and we’ll let you know if a spot opens up!

Explore the "Crown of the Continent"

Established as a National Park in 1910, Glacier National Park is a land of mountain ranges carved by prehistoric rivers of ice. Its diverse landscape features alpine meadows, deep forests, waterfalls, about 50 glistening glaciers, and 200 sparkling lakes. The vistas from Going-To-The-Sun Road are breathtaking–a photographer’s paradise. During the Glacier Country Hangout, you’ll experience some of the highlights of Montana’s Flathead Valley and the park that’s known as the “Crown of the Continent”.

We’ll kick off the Hangout with an all-day “Mountain Majesty” interpretive tour across the park aboard the National Park Service’s famous Red Buses. These vintage 1930s buses have open-air roll-back tops that are perfect for providing upwards views of the stunning mountains and the area’s signature Big Sky. From the Lake McDonald Valley, our buses will traverse the narrow and winding Going-to-the-Sun Road over Logan Pass, across the Continental Divide, and down into the cirques of the St. Mary Valley, with several stops along the way and an optional lunch at Rising Sun’s Two Dog Flats Grill. This tour is ordinarily available to only 16 people a day, but it’s included for everyone attending this Hangout!

The next day, we’ll explore Glacier’s Lake McDonald Valley, home to one of Montana’s few rainforests. We’ll begin with one of the most popular hikes in the park, to Avalanche Lake via Trail of the Cedars. This moderately challenging trail is 6.7 miles round-trip with a 757′ elevation change, and will take 3-5 hours at a leisurely pace, including time for a picnic lunch at Avalanche Lake. Afterwards, we’ll enjoy a one-hour scenic guided cruise on emerald-hued Lake McDonald, followed by an optional dinner at Lake McDonald Lodge and dramatic views of the sunset over the lake.

two medicine lake

We’ll spend a day on the quieter and less crowded east side of the park in the Two Medicine Valley, known to locals as the “Secret Valley”. Fewer people means greater wildlife viewing opportunities and a chance to find seclusion on this 3-mile-long glacially carved lake. You’ll have the option to join the group on a scenic boat tour and hike (see Optional Activities below), or explore the cobalt waters of Two Medicine Lake in your own watercraft or a rented rowboat, kayak, canoe, or motorboat. Or if you prefer, find a fishing hole, or just relax and bask in the majestic views.

We’ll devote another day to exploring the Logan Pass area of the park. Several hikes of varying lengths and difficulties start here. Take the relatively easy trail to Hidden Lake Overlook (2.9 miles round trip, 567′ elevation change), or continue on the moderate Hidden Lake Trail (5.3 miles round trip, 1,374′ elevation change). Or challenge yourself on one of the most difficult hikes in Glacier National Park, the Highline Trail. Walk as far as you wish along the glacially-carved Garden Wall; if you go all the way from Logan Pass to Granite Park Chalet, it’s 7.5 miles one-way with a total elevation gain of 1,289′. Or avoid the round-trip, and instead descend 2,608′ over just 4 miles on the steeply switchbacked trail from Granite Park back to The Loop

On the last day of the Hangout, we’ll relax a bit with a visit to the tiny Flathead Valley community of Polebridge. This completely off-the-grid town is 27 miles north of West Glacier on mostly dirt road, and less than a mile from the northwest entrance to Glacier National Park. The hub of the town is the 100-year-old Polebridge Bakery & Mercantile, a one-stop shop for locals and visitors that is known for its world-class fresh baked goods, sandwiches, and authentic personality. After lunch at the “Merc”, we’ll continue northward, almost to the Canadian border, to Bowman Lake inside the park boundary for hiking or boating on your own. And after we return to Hungry Horse, we’ll conclude the Hangout with a potluck dinner.

Vehicle size restrictions on Going-to-the-Sun Road: Going-to-the-Sun Road (GTSR), the only driving route across Glacier National Park, is a narrow and winding road with some low rock overhangs. For this reason, there are length, width, and height restrictions on vehicles traveling between Avalanche Campground and the Rising Sun picnic area. These restrictions will prohibit most RVs and dual-rear-wheel pickup trucks from using this portion of GTSR. For this reason, we have structured the Hangout schedule to minimize driving into the central and eastern sections of GTSR, and we will use the park’s shuttle system when necessary. All vehicles can access the Apgar and Lake McDonald areas on the western side of the park. We will carpool as much as possible to minimize parking issues.

Ticketed entry to Going-to-the-Sun Road: Glacier National Park has just announced a new ticketed entry system for the entire GTSR corridor this summer. Entering the park at West Glacier will require both a Park Pass (any America the Beautiful annual or lifetime pass or a $35 per vehicle weekly pass) plus a $2.00 Entry Reservation Ticket. Entry Reservation Tickets are valid for seven consecutive days per vehicle, and can be purchased online 60 days in advance. We will provide additional information on the Entry Reservation Ticket process to all registered attendees at the Hangout. 

Optional activities

Because all of these excursions are in extremely high demand, you must purchase tickets for them in advance at the time you register for the Hangout

Half day Flathead River scenic float OR whitewater rafting ($55/person)

The Middle and North Fork of the Flathead River, which form the southern and western boundaries of Glacier National Park, are protected as National Wild and Scenic Rivers, ensuring that they will remain free-flowing and untamed. These glacial-fed waters rank as some of the cleanest rivers in the world. On these guided adventure trips, participants often see deer, mountain goats, osprey, eagles, beavers, bears, and you may even hear howling wolves.

You can choose either of the following options (both will occur at the same time):

  • Scenic float: a fun and relaxing way to experience the beauty of Montana without all the whitewater. This raft trip begins with views of towering mountain peaks, then enters one of the prettiest canyons in the region with deep emerald-green water–a visual treat that can only be experienced in a raft!
  • Whitewater rafting: Primarily Class II-II+ rapids depending on river flow volume. Fun, exciting waves separated by calm sections. No experience necessary; your guide will teach you all you need to know!

Two Medicine Lake boat tour & Twin Falls hike ($16.75/person)

Explore Glacier National Park’s hidden gem with a one-hour boat tour on Two Medicine Lake. Climb aboard the charming historic wooden vessel Sinopah and take in the scenery while learning about the rich Blackfeet tribal history surrounding the Two Medicine area. From the upper west shore dock, you can either remain on the boat for the return trip or disembark and join us for an easy guided hike (1.5 hours, 1.9 miles round-trip, 111′ elevation gain) through forests and sweeping alpine meadows to the double cascades at Twin Falls, returning on a later boat.

Hangout location

One of the challenges of visiting Glacier National Park from the west side during the summer is finding a campground close enough to the park. But for this Hangout, we have been able to reserve virtually all of the RV sites at Beargrass Lodging and RV Resort in the town of Hungry Horse, putting us just 11 miles outside Glacier’s west entrance!

Most of the RV sites at Beargrass have full hookups with 30 amp electric service. 50 amp service is also available at each of these sites for an additional $5 per night, payable to the campground. We also have a few dry camping sites and one 30 amp electric-only site available.

Arrivals before the Hangout begins, or departures after the Hangout ends, are also available subject to availability. To make a reservation for early arrival or late departure, contact the park at 406-387-5531 or by email at beargrasslodging@gmail.com. Be sure to identify yourself as part of the Escapees Hangout.

Is this event right for me?

Everyone is welcome at all Escapees RV Club events. With that said, the Glacier Country Hangout is best suited for members who:

  • enjoy moderately challenging hikes on uneven terrain, some at altitudes of 6,000-7,000 feet
  • can participate in activities during weekdays (traditional working/business hours)
  • can be away from their RVs for up to 10 or more hours at a time (pet owners should consider kennels or pet-sitters)

For events designed specifically for working-age RVers, with most activities in the evenings and on weekends, try an Xscapers Convergence. Or for more of an all-inclusive, guided-tour experience, you may prefer one of our Head-Out Programs (HOPs).

At this Hangout, you should also anticipate occasional long driving days (up to 2 hours at a time) because of the long distances, mountainous topography, and popularity of Glacier National Park during August. For the same reason, some of our days in Glacier will require early-morning departures (7:00 to 8:00 am) from the RV park.

COVID-19 precautions (updated August 18, 2021)

Because the safety of our members and staff is our number one priority, proof of either full COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test will be required to attend this event.

Escapees recommends that members be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 before attending any club event. (“Fully vaccinated” means that at least two weeks have passed since receiving the second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines or the single-dose Johnson & Johnson or Astra-Zeneca vaccines). Participants who are not fully vaccinated must obtain a COVID-19 test not more than 72 hours (three days) before entering this event.

    • At event check-in, you will be asked to present either a valid CDC vaccination card showing that you are fully vaccinated OR the written results of a negative COVID-19 test performed within the past 72 hours.
    • If you don’t have a test, have lost your vaccination card, or are outside of the 72-hour window, locations of the nearest testing facilities will be provided to you. You will be required to self-isolate until a negative test can be provided.
    • Participants who test positive are not allowed to remain on site, and will receive a full refund of their registration fee.
Situations in which you may not attend this event

You may not attend this event if any of the following are true for you or anyone in your party, unless you have met CDC criteria for discontinuing self-isolation:

    • Within 14 days before attending the event you have tested positive, or been exposed to someone who has tested positive, for COVID-19, or
    • Within 48 hours before attending the event, you have experienced symptoms of COVID-19 (e.g., a fever of 100 or higher, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, chills, repeated shaking muscle pain/achiness, headache, sore throat, loss of taste or smell, nasal congestion, runny nose, vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue, or any other symptoms associated with COVID-19 identified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), whether or not you are vaccinated, unless you have obtained a negative COVID-19 test since the onset of your symptoms and within 72 hours before entering this event.
FAQs about the vaccine/testing requirement

While PCR tests are preferred because they are the most accurate, antigen tests (also referred to as rapid tests) will be accepted.

Yes, children who are not fully vaccinated will need a negative COVID-19 test result to attend.

If you are not fully vaccinated, you can get tested at any facility that offers COVID-19 testing. The websites of most state or county public health departments can help you find testing locations. Many retail pharmacies also offer testing. Your event hosts will have a list of testing locations in the area of the event.

If you test positive for COVID-19 before the event, you are unfortunately no longer eligible to attend. To receive a full refund of your registration fee, email a copy of your positive test result to us at hangouts@escapees.com.

If you test positive for COVID-19 during the event, you may not remain on-site at the event. 

If you’ve had COVID-19 within 14 days before attending the event (meaning you are still within the 14-day isolation window), you are unfortunately not eligible to attend. To receive a full refund of your registration fee, email a dated copy of your positive test result to us at hangouts@escapees.com.

If you’ve lost your CDC vaccine card, you will need to obtain a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours before arriving at the event.

Masks recommended indoors

In accordance with current guidance from the CDC, Escapees strongly recommends that all attendees, vaccinated or not, wear a mask when participating in activities or socializing with other participants indoors. Attendees are also expected to comply with all masking requirements issued by any governmental entity or private business.

Other precautions

The COVID-19 health and safety precautions that will be in effect during the Hangout will depend on the state of the pandemic, local and state health regulations, and recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and other medical professionals at the time. These precautions may include measures such as requiring wearing of masks in certain situations, requiring social distancing, avoiding indoor group activities, limiting carpooling, and/or limiting activities that include sharing of food. In addition to the above, you may be required to agree in writing that you will help provide a safe environment for everyone by complying with our health and safety rules, and to release Escapees from liability should you become ill during or after the event. 

Please also be aware that the availability and content of some planned activities may change depending on local and state health regulations and the business’ own COVID-19 mitigation policies.

Schedule

Activities and schedule are subject to change. Activities marked with an *asterisk are not included in your Hangout fee.

Tuesday 8/24

Arrive at Beargrass Lodging & RV Resort

Evening welcome campfire & introductions 

Wednesday 8/25

Historic Red Bus Mountain Majesty Tour

Optional group restaurant dinner in Columbia Falls area*

Thursday 8/26

Avalanche Lake hike via Trail of the Cedars

Lake McDonald boat tour

Restaurant dinner*

Sunset over Lake McDonald

Friday 8/27

Optional Flathead River scenic float OR whitewater rafting*

Grill-out dinner at RV park

Saturday 8/28

Two Medicine Valley

Optional boat tour and hike to Twin Falls*

Optional group restaurant dinner in East Glacier Village area

Sunday 8/29

Logan Pass Visitor’s Center

Hiking from Logan Pass (or sightseeing on your own)

Monday 8/30

Polebridge & Bowman Lake

Pot-luck dinner

Tuesday 8/31

GTHO pastry breakfast

Departure

Registration includes:

  • 7 nights RV camping 
  • Historic Red Bus Mountain Majesty full-day tour (gratuities included)
  • Lake McDonald scenic boat tour
  • Hiking
  • Social activities
  • GTHO departure day breakfast
  • Hangout hosts

Optional activities: Flathead River Scenic Float OR Whitewater Rafting ($55/person), Two Medicine Lake Boat Tour & Hike ($16.75/person)

Additional costs to consider: National Park admission pass, Entry Reservation Ticket for Going-to-the-Sun Road ($2/vehicle for the week), optional watercraft rental at Two Medicine Lake, meals out

All activities listed for this event are subject to change.

By attending this event, you are agreeing to the following: 

  • As an attendee, you assume all risk and danger relating to your personal property, RV and attendance at the Hangout, whether occurring prior to, during or after the event. In the event of loss or theft, no claim will be made upon Escapees, its volunteers, employees or agents.
  • Volunteers may be directing and assisting you in your parking areas. However, it is the driver of the vehicle who is ultimately responsible for avoiding obstacles or dangerous situations and is solely responsible for any damage to one’s property or the property of others.
  • As an attendee at this event, you are granting your permission to be filmed, videotaped, audiotaped, or photographed, and granting to Escapees RV Club the full use of any such recordings or images without compensation. 
  • By registering, you will also receive occasional email notifications of future Hangouts; however, you can opt-out of these notifications at any time. 
  • If COVID-19 protocols are still required at the time of the Hangout, you will help provide a safe environment for everyone by complying with our health and safety rules. If requested, you will sign a written agreement releasing Escapees from liability should you become ill during or after the event.

How to register

There are two ways to register and pay: by phone or online.

  • To register online (recommended), click the button below and follow the instructions on your screen.
  • To register by phone, call Escapees Event Registration at ‭(936) 755-1060‬‬.

Registration opens Wednesday, April 28, 2021
at 10:00 a.m. Central Daylight Time.

We’re sorry, but this Hangout is currently sold out. If you’d still like to attend, please join the waiting list. We’ll notify you if a spot opens up.

After you register

Watch for an email from registration@escapees.com for a confirmation of your registration. If you don’t receive it, call Escapees Event Registration at ‭(936) 755-1060‬ to be sure that your registration was processed correctly.

Important: as soon as you register, please join the Escapees Glacier Country Hangout group on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/groups/GlacierHangout/). We will use this group to communicate with Hangout attendees before and during the event. You will also receive one or more emails before the Hangout with more information as needed.

Cancellations

If you cancel on or before Friday, July 23, 2021, you will receive a refund of your Hangout registration fee (including any optional activities you purchased) minus a $50 cancellation fee. 

There will be no refunds for cancellations received after July 23, 2021.

Waiting list

If this Hangout is sold out when you try to register, please join the waiting list by completing the form below. There are usually several cancellations before a Hangout…so if a spot opens up and you’re the next one on the waiting list, you’ll get another shot at registration!

Details

Start:
August 24
End:
August 31
Event Category:
Event Tags:
, ,
Website:
escapees.com/hangouts

Organizer

Escapees Hangouts (Hosts: Cheryl & David Goldstein)
Email:
hangouts@escapees.com

Venue

Beargrass Lodging & RV Resort
8688 Highway 2 East
Hungry Horse, MT 59919 United States
+ Google Map
Phone:
406-387-5531
Website:
https://www.beargrasslodging.com

COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease) Notification - For latest club information affecting members and RVers, please click here.

Escapees Lobby Hours Escapees lobby will be open 8:am-5:pm Monday-Friday beginning 10/4; however, Mail Service sign-ups are by appointment only at 936-327-8873. Masks are required. If you need assistance with your Escapees RV Club membership, please call us at 936-327-8873 or email us at clubbusiness@escapees.com.

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